Poker is a card game that involves betting. At the start of a hand, all players have two “hole” cards that they must use along with five community cards. A player then chooses five cards from this set to form a hand. If everyone checks or raises, the game continues to the next round. If all players Call or Fold, the betting ends, and the winner is the person who has the highest hand.
Each hand is dealt clockwise around a poker table. In casual games, the right to deal the hand rotates among the players. The dealer button is a white plastic disk that identifies the dealer. When betting starts, the dealer button moves clockwise. After each hand, the player to the left of the dealer must post the small blind or the big blind. The next player to the left of the dealer will then post his or her bet.
The highest ranking hand is called a straight flush. A straight flush is five cards of the same suit. Aces can be high or low. An Ace high straight flush is known as a Royal Flush. The highest ranking hand wins the game. However, the highest pair does not necessarily win. If the highest pair of cards is not possible, a high card is used to break the tie.
Poker is believed to have originated in ancient Persia. Its first European version dates from the 17th century. During this time, it evolved alongside the German game pochen and the Spanish primero. It then spread to the New World by the French settlers.